The Cruise … Passengers.
Posted by Big John on July 21, 2011
Today there are so many cruises to choose from that you can .. choose your itinerary .. choose your price .. choose your cabin .. choose your restaurant .. but you can’t choose your fellow passengers ….
… and in the past this has always put me off the idea of cruising, for, by nature, I am not a gregarious person and the thought of being stuck with hundreds of ‘jolly wallies’ for two weeks was not something which I relished.
Now as a ‘survivor’ of three voyages on the high seas, I must say that I have mostly enjoyed the experience; but then I have been lucky in not being forced to share a table at dinner with a group of people whom you think are perfectly pleasant at the start of the cruise, but who you would happily cast adrift in an open boat by the end. A table for two works well for me.
It was Jean-Paul Sartre who said … “Hell is other people”, and to a large extent I have to agree with him. However I do enjoy observing the more ‘colourful’ and eccentric characters among us, and the confines of a fairly small cruise ship are a good place to do just that. It wasn’t quite ‘Agatha Christie’, but we did have, among others, a 4’6″ tall ‘Russian’ ballerina (“I just lurv to tango, darlink“), who must have known Najinsky and Diaghilev, and a “Colonel Blimp” type who probably thought that the ship was on it’s way back to ‘the colonies’.
Needless to say I avoided, like the plague, all those .. “let’s all join in and have fun” .. activities which some Brits so love when on holiday. I guess it must be some sort of masochistic nostalgia for the days of those post-war holiday camps.
It’s only fair to say that I did pass the time of day with some very pleasant and interesting people, and even the few natterers and nutters I met were harmless, but after two weeks in the company of strangers, I was pleased to return to dry land and the solitude and comforts of home.
So will this somewhat reclusive old git be taking that six month world cruise next year ? … Well, only if I’m …
… ‘shanghaied’ by a press gang !